Hospital Discharge & Avoiding Readmission

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Staying in the hospital can be intimidating for seniors and their caregivers. Seniors are often so ready to go home they speed through the discharge process and increase the risk of readmission. Below you’ll find essential details about hospital discharges and readmissions, including what questions to ask and what goes into a proper care plan.

Treatment

Before being released, your elderly parent’s nurse and doctor will go over treatment, which could include prescriptions, physical therapy, counseling, and more. During this time, you need to find out the purpose of the medications, the side effects of treatment, the foods your loved one should eat, and the types of activities he or she needs to avoid. This step is critical, which is why many hospitals offer supplemental reading, educational programs, and interpreters for the discharge process.

Care Plan

You’re the expert on your loved one’s home care, so the nurses will discuss the conditions of the home with you to ensure your loved one’s environment is safe and secure. They’ll inform you of the limitations your parent has so you can decide if any changes need to be made to the property. A care plan is vital for all caregivers, especially those who are new to the role. Discharge planners can help you identify your strengths and weaknesses with regard to caregiving. The planners may also give you information about financial and social resources available to older adults, which can make things easier for your family and reduce the risk of hospital readmissions.

A professional caregiver can monitor your loved one for post-hospitalization complications and safety risks, reducing the chances of readmission. When searching for reliable home care service agencies, families want to know their senior loved one will be well taken care of. At Home Care Assistance, our expertly trained caregivers are available around the clock to assist with tasks around the house, provide transportation to medical appointments and social events, and much more.

First 30 Days After Discharge

Most hospital readmissions take place within 30 days after discharge. Many seniors are readmitted due to ineffective treatment or environmental factors. High blood pressure and skipped doctor appointments are the top causes of readmissions among older adults. You need to take your loved one to the doctor within seven days of discharge. At this time, you’ll need to share any information about your loved one’s health, including his or her response to medication as well as cognitive abilities and mental wellbeing. Sharing these details can help the primary care physician determine if another course of treatment is necessary.

Some seniors only require help with a few daily tasks so they can maintain their independence. However, those living with serious illnesses may need more extensive assistance. Luckily, there is professional live-in care Rockwall, TX, seniors can rely on. Home can be a safer and more comfortable place for your loved one to live with the help of an expertly trained and dedicated live-in caregiver.

Caregiver Discharge Checklist

People are typically in a rush to leave the hospital, so they forget to ask important questions during the discharge process. If you don’t understand anything about the recovery process, speak up before leaving the facility. There’s no wrong or right question to ask when it pertains to your loved one’s safety. Create a list of questions to present to his or her medical providers. If you feel your loved one isn’t ready to be discharged, speak with the doctor. You should also contact your loved one’s insurance provider to see what the options are. Leaving before they’re ready is one of the top reasons many seniors are readmitted to the hospital. Keep in mind your loved one won’t have the same medical staff or equipment at home, so you need to make sure he or she is physically, emotionally, and mentally ready to be released before you sign the discharge paperwork.

There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Home Care Assistance is a leading Rockwall homecare services provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life. Contact one of our experienced Care Managers today at (972) 722-7833 to learn more about our reliable in-home care services.